Black Marriage Day - Black Love is Alive and Thriving
Kuae Kelch Mattox, National President
Since the very beginning of our wonderful sisterhood, one of our greatest foundational pillars has been the strengthening of marriages. Our mothers lend an ear to listen, give a shoulder to cry on, provide a platform for discussion and a support system to rely upon.
This March and April, chapters across Mochaland will celebrate the beauty of Black Marriage with Black Marriage Day celebrations from galas, game nights and guest speakers to book author discussions, couples retreats and bowling nights. Black Marriage Day was started in 2003 by Nisa Muhammad, founder of the Wedded Bliss Foundation, in 30 cities to shine a spotlight on the positive. It's goal is to highlight the benefits of marriage, pay tribute to successful marriages and promote marriage in the black community. Today, there are celebrations of all kinds in hundreds of cities across the country.
Why is this so important? We have certainly all heard the dismal statistics, not just about black marriage, but marriage in general. And we've heard the stereotypes and assumptions that our relationships cannot withstand the test of time. When we read a magazine or turn on the television, quite often we see "us" represented in a less than positive light. But we know the real deal. Don't get me wrong. Marriage has its ups and downs, soft spots and rough patches. But for many of us, happily ever after does in fact exist and we are dedicated and committed to relationships that nourish our hearts and feed our souls. Quite simply, black love is alive and thriving.
It is so vital that we take a moment to acknowledge our commitment to each other and to celebrate our love for our family, friends and children for the world to see. To all of our chapters celebrating Black Marriage Day, and to all of you who are part of this diaspora of Black love, we honor you!
Posted: March 11, 2019
Black History and Motherhood
Danae Aicher, National Director of Communications
It's the start of Black History Month, the one month of the year during which we honor and celebrate the many contributions of black people throughout our history. We don't talk enough about the black women who have given so much to us and we certainly don't focus on their roles as mothers. Many of them we don't even think of or know of as mothers.
Sojourner Truth was a mother.
Rosa Parks was a mother.
Claudette Colvin, who was 15 when she refused to give up her seat on a segregated bus before Rosa Parks did it, was a mother.
Septima Clark, often called the Queen Mother of the Civil Rights Movement, was a mother.
Mary Church Terrell, an education activist and charter member of the NAACP, was a mother.
Ida B. Wells was a mother.
Kathleen Cleaver and Angela Davis, both renowned professors and former Black Panther leaders, are mothers.
Diane Nash is a mother.
Charlayne Hunter-Gault, the noted journalist who was the first black woman to enroll at the University of Georgia, is a mother.
Katherine Johnson, the brilliant mathematician featured in the movie Hidden Figures, is a mother.
All of these women (and so many more) did amazing things to advance us as a people and as a country! And, among the great things they did was raise children. All of us are doing amazing work whether we're at-home Moms, Moms working outside the home, Moms with home businesses, single Moms, or empty nesters. However being a Mom looks for us, we are all making hard choices, prioritizing our children and families, and putting in long hours, our hearts and our souls into raising these brilliant lights for the world. Let's be sure to celebrate that, as well!
Sisterhood. Support. Service. That's who we are. That's what we do. Please join us. Renew or become a new member today.
Posted: February 1, 2019
Meet Our New Northeast Regional Director
Rosalind (Roz) Miller-Choice has been a member of Mocha Moms Inc. for eight years. In that time, she has served in many capacities in her local Essex County NJ Chapter, the latest as Co-President.
For 18 years Roz has been married to her husband, Wally. They have an 11-year-old son, Andrew.
Known as The Expert Maker, she is the C.E.O. of Ècriture Press & Productions, a personal branding company that works with specialists in various fields. She also is the Founder of The Clara V. Miller Scholarship Fund, Fundraising Chairperson for a New Jersey women's homeless shelter, and a member of the Board of Directors for Stronger Tomorrow Inc., which was developed to promote positive mental and physical health practices among young women. As if that weren't enough, she chairs the hospitality committee for the PTA, is an active member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc., and serves as a volunteer for Million Man Montclair, which feeds more than 800 Senior Citizens on Thanksgiving Day.
Clearly Roz is committed to service, and we are so pleased that she has also agreed to step up and serve as our new Northeast Regional Director!
Posted: January 28, 2019
Kuae Mattox, National President
On this day we officially commemorate the birth of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., the most visible and well-known leader of the Civil Rights Movement. His vision and dream for a better America knew no bounds, and his nonviolent activism and relentless fight against inequality and injustice captivated a nation and changed the world, leading to the passing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Voting Rights Act of 1965. Dr. King believed all Americans could live up to their purpose and potential by helping to solve social problems through service. His words above became the hallmark for the community service movement and continue to resonate today. To Dr. King, service wasn't just about service. It was about opening your arms and your mind to others who may not look or think like us, changing assumptions, dispelling stereotypes and eliminating prejudices. He challenged us to serve others and learn about the issues that confront them. Many of us on this "Day on, not a day off" will serve our communities in some capacity. We will pack and provide meals, paint a mural, plant a garden, collect shoes, clothing, canned goods and housewares among other things.
Those of us in Mochaland understand the deep and profound importance of loving one another unconditionally and giving to others selflessly. For more than 20 years community service has been the cornerstone of our identity. We do it not because we will receive recognition and accolades, but because it is our labor of love, our gift as mothers with hearts full of grace and souls generated by love. And our children...they are the sweet and soft sponges who watch and learn, then grow into a life with service as part of their culture.
If Dr. King were alive today, what would he think of our commitment to service? I can imagine he would be smiling, cheering us on as we march for babies, adopt families, raise money, host educational summits, toy drives and financial literacy workshops. He would say this is a New Year, a time to renew our commitment to each other and to those around us, not just this month, but every month of the year. He would encourage us, through word and deed, to use his words as a guide and remind us that each one of us can be great, no education or special qualifications required. As mothers, in our homes and in our chapters, we are uniquely equipped to open our arms and share the greatness that lies within. Let's honor Dr. King and ourselves by continuing to serve with the most important ingredient - our hearts and our souls. It is the very essence of who we are.
Much Mocha Love,
Posted: January 21, 2019
New Year, New Support
We are so excited about 2019 and another year of Mochalicious sisterhood, love and support! One of the foundational pillars of our organization is marriage and family. From the beginning, Mocha Moms has been committed to helping us maintain strong and healthy marriages. We are so happy to announce that we now have a national Marriage Support Program Coordinator!
Brooke N. Hawkins joined Mocha Moms, Inc. in February 2010 after becoming an accidental stay-at-home Mom. Since becoming a Mocha, she has held the positions of Secretary, Vice-President, Social Media Coordinator, and Co-President in both the Southern Prince George's and Silver Spring chapters. Brooke passionately, consistently, and persistently pushes the Mocha agenda through her social media platforms and to friends and family members she knows would benefit from joining.
"Mocha Moms gave me a sense of purpose at a time when I was a brand new mommy, newly laid off, and living with my parents. The moms embraced me then and continue to encourage and inspire me to be the best wife and mommy I can possibly be," she said.
She and her husband, Paul, married in 2013 and they are the proud parents of 9-year-old Jacob and 4-year-old Autumn. In an effort to share both her struggles and triumphs as a wife and mother, she started a blog called Mom of 2 Wife of One where she tackles subjects like the importance of communication, balancing motherhood and marriage, and catering to her own needs.
Brooke loves what Mocha Moms stands for and is excited to embark on this journey as the new Marriage Support Program Coordinator!
Posted: January 14, 2019
It's hard to believe that 2018 is almost over and we are about to wrap up a busy holiday season. We hope you are spending precious time with your family, friends and loved ones and taking in all that the season has to offer. For many of us, this is a magical and wondrous time, an opportunity to connect with others, spread some holiday cheer and help those who are less fortunate. For others, it's a bittersweet time to remember those who have passed and share sweet memories. We have so much to be thankful for...the love of family, the laughter and smiles of our children, the generosity of friends, the support that we give and receive from this wonderful sisterhood of mothers.
To all of our Mocha Sisters, warm wishes and special thanks for being an important part of our organization. You are what makes us special. We wish you and your families a very happy and joyous holiday season full of abundant love, simple laughter and never ending peace.
Much Mocha Love,
The Mocha Moms, Inc. National Board
Kuae, Cheli, Kim, Shalaun, LaShaun, Danae and Tiffany
Posted: December 24, 2018
Danae Aicher, National Director of Communications
The winter holidays bring so many beautiful traditions! In our Mocha Moms family, we have sisters from diverse cultures and sometimes they go unrecognized. We want to acknowledge as many of them as we can. Below are just a few upcoming winter holidays from various cultural traditions. You might even take some time with your kids to look them up and learn about some of the less well-known traditions.
Thursday, Dec. 6- St. Nikolaus Day (Tag)
Wednesday, Dec. 12- Feast of Our Lady of Guadelupe
Thursday, Dec. 13- St. Lucia Day
Monday, Dec. 17- Saturnalia
Tuesday, Dec. 18- Asarah B' Tevet
Friday, Dec. 21- Yule
Tuesday, Dec. 25- Christmas Day
Wednesday, Dec. 26- Kwaanza
Wednesday, Dec. 26- Boxing Day/St. Stephen's Day
Monday, Dec. 31- Omisoka
Posted: December 10, 2018
Danae Aicher, National Director of Communications
For many, if not most, of us, Thanksgiving is a time to get together with family and to take some time to reflect on all the wonderful blessings in our lives. For others, however, it is a day of mourning. History doesn't change just because the story we tell does. As mothers of color, the challenge we have is to hold on to all the good while making sure our kids are equipped with all the stories and lessons of history to keep them protected. Furthermore, teaching complexities builds cognitive skills.
Debby Irving, a well-respected leader in racial equity, recently wrote about the beauty of Thanksgiving while encouraging us to recognize the truths about the holiday's origins. Doing this, she says, can actually lead us to healing and to helping our children break free from the chains that bind us to cycles of inequity.
Have a very happy day of thanks!
Posted: November 19, 2018
Real Talk: Mocha Moms and Mental Health
Tiffany Kerr, National Director of Community Service
All of us, at some point or another, go through things we don't want to talk about. We marry, have children, and take on the many responsibilities of nurturing a family, a home and, for some of us, our careers! Maybe you're a single mom telling yourself you've got this, when sometimes you don't. Perhaps you just had a baby and your mind is racing with regrets, anxiety, and exhaustion. You're being pulled in so many different directions, when you're alone you cry or want to scream. Or just the thought of another added task is simply too much. Whatever the issue, too many of us suffer in silence even though we are part of Mocha Moms, Inc. We don't have to! We joined this amazing organization for a reason. We were all looking for something or going through something we thought other women like us would understand.
Please know that your Mocha sisters have your back! Let's talk about it and be real about it! Mental health is not something to ignore. It's real life. When you just need time alone, away from the kids or your husband, Mochas understand. Let's be the support group that is open to conversations without judgment or diagnosis. Let's discuss true symptoms, promote awareness and provide sisterly support.
To help Mochas to provide each other with the best support possible, we have partnered with NAMI, (National Alliance on Mental Illness) for resources, website information, helpline support for referrals, and community service opportunities for your chapter to spread awareness about how important it is for moms to say, "It's okay. Today is not a good day." This partnership will also bring better awareness of any symptoms of mental health so that we can continue to be amazing mothers to our children.
Start sharing ways to support and build up each other's mental health. Join us with NAMI by first taking the #StigmaFree pledge HERE.
Posted: November 4, 2018
A New Mocha Moms Chapter - Richmond, VA!
We are excited to welcome a new chapter - Richmond, Virginia - to our Mocha sisterhood!
Posted: October 22, 2018
Introducing our new New Jersey State Coordinator
Rosalind Cox Larrieux joined Mocha Moms in 2009. Since then, she has helped charter two chapters in New Jersey, where she continues to be an active member and leader in the Middlesex County and Jersey Shore Chapters. Several initiatives were developed under her leadership.
In her professional career, Rosalind is a Physical Therapist with a specialty in women's health and pelvic rehabilitation. She enjoys teaching, community service, and "all things spa". Rosalind is married with two daughters and a teenaged son. The children are hoping to grow their family with a fur baby at some point in the near future!
Rosalind is very passionate and dedicated to Mocha Moms, Inc. and she is looking forward to building and growing the momentum in New Jersey!
We are lucky to have her step into another leadership role!
Posted: October 15, 2018
Rest, Relax and Recharge!
Join us July 12-14, 2019 at the Kingston Plantation Resort Condos and Villas in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina as Mochas nationwide come together for a weekend of relaxation, fun and socializing to recharge our batteries!
Book your accommodations NOW on your own (use a discount hotel broker such as Expedia or booking.com or feel free to contact the hotel directly) so that you can secure a room. There is no Mocha room block, but current discount broker rates are excellent. This is a very popular resort that often sells out many months in advance (by December!). Don't miss out. Book now! The Very Early Bird Special rate of $135 is available until Nov. 30, 2018.
This is a MEMBERS ONLY event! Click HERE for more information.
Posted: October 8, 2018
A New Mocha Moms Chapter - Metro DC, DC!
We are excited to welcome a new chapter - Metro DC, District of Columbia - to our Mocha sisterhood!
Posted: October 1, 2018
A New Mocha Moms Chapter - Jersey Shore, NJ!
We are excited to welcome a new chapter - Jersey Shore, New Jersey - to our Mocha sisterhood!
Posted: September 10, 2018
United State of Women Summit
Mocha Moms, Inc. sent 20 Mochas from California's Inland Valley, San Fernando Valley and Los Angeles Chapters to represent at the 2018 United State of Women Summit (USOW) in Los Angeles at the Shrine Auditorium. The USOW Summit is a gathering of women from across the country and abroad, who know their energy and power to break down barriers that stand between women and full equality. Thousands of women convene to inspire and be inspired, to motivate and be motivated, to teach and to learn.
Posted: May 7, 2018
Heifer International Community Leader Series: Meet LaShaun Martin
"We deserve a seat at the table. If one is not offered to us, we buy the hammer, wood and nails and build our own chairs." ~ LaShaun Martin
National VP LaShaun Martin, along with other familiar Mocha faces are featured in Heifer International's Community Leader Spotlight. Heifer Int'l works to end world hunger, poverty and provides resources to help women thrive, grow and change communities. Click here to read the interview.
Posted: April 18, 2018
Meet Our New National Director of Community Service!
Please join us in welcoming Bergen County, New Jersey Mocha Tiffany Kerr to the National Board! Tiffany joined Mocha Moms, Inc. in 2009 when her daughter was two years old after relocating to New Jersey. She has been a member of the Bergen County, New Jersey chapter ever since. Click here to learn more.
Posted: April 16, 2018
Calling All Military Mochas!
Military Mocha Moms had a great first network meeting last week. We discussed some of the difficult aspects of motherhood that are unique to military moms and even more the Mocha military mom. We explored the best way that this network can provide support for this group of ladies at this point in our journey. Our next group discussion will be held in the last week of April. We'd love to have more military Mochas join in the conversation. Whether you are an active duty, reserves, or retired member or spouse, we'd like to hear from you. Join the network and our military Mocha Moms Facebook page to connect with this amazing group of ladies. The Network Director, Jené Wilkerson, can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Posted: April 9, 2018
Calling All Homeschooling Mochas!
If you are a homeschooling Mocha please sign up for the homeschooling network. This is the time to start getting ready for the new school year, and we want to make sure you are up to date on any changes to state laws and curriculum fairs. We are planning on having a teleconference in May and we want your participation. Let's also applaud and thank Katrina Morrison of the Atlanta Mocha Moms chapter for being willing to serve as the homeschooling coordinator for the state of Georgia. Don't forget, if you're homeschooling or are interested in homeschooling, reach out to Irene Tucker at email@example.com.
Posted: April 9, 2018
March For Our Lives
Thousands of students across the country participated in the March for Our Lives rally across the country. Among them were some Mocha kids, including 15-year old 9th grader Arija Martin. She was there in Washington, DC and posted this statement. And be sure to watch 11 year old Naomi Wadler's amazing speech at the march.
Posted: March 26, 2018
Southwest Regional Leaders Summit
We had a wonderful time at this weekend's Southwest Regional Leaders Summit! Southwest Regional Director, Imani Nash-Bey, brought together leaders from that region for a day of learning, sisterhood and fun in San Jose.
Posted: February 26, 2018
Mid-Atlantic Leaders on Good Day Washington!
Posted: February 8, 2018
Mid-Atlantic Regional Leadership Summit
We had yet another wonderful day in Mochaland at the Mid-Atlantic Regional Leadership Summit in Maryland with DMV Mocha Leaders. This region is where it all began in 1997. We are blessed to have Co-Founder Cheli English-Figaro as part of this region and the JEWEL of this organization. Thank you to Regional Director Damita Coats Wray and her State Coordinator team for your awesome leadership in the Flagship Region!
Posted: February 5, 2018
Southeast Regional Leadership Summit
Our Mocha Tour headed to Atlanta last weekend for the Southeast Regional Leadership Summit. National Board Members LaShaun Martin and Danae Aicher joined 2018 Mocha Leaders from Alabama, Florida, The Carolinas and Georgia for an amazingweekend. Our Mocha cups overflowed with tons of Mocha Love from the laughter, tears, Exhale and sister bonds formed. Thank you to the Southeast Regional Director Cree Davis, for serving from your heart.
Follow the highlights at #mochamoms on all of our social media platforms
Posted: February 2, 2018
Northeast Regional Leadership Summit
The National Board is still rolling on our Mocha Tour! Our next stop was the Northeast Regional Leadership Summit in New Jersey! Over 25 leaders from NY, NJ, CT, and PA were hosted by Regional Directors Tanisha Day and Shanequa Levin. National President, Kuae Mattox and National Vice President - Operations, LaShaun Martin joined these dynamic Mochas for a day of training, sisterhood, support and laughter!
Follow the highlights at #mochamoms on all of our social media platforms
Posted: January 26, 2018
Tweens and Teens Network: A Day on Not Off
On MLK Day, Mocha TnTs served their community by committing to "A Day on Not Off" of service. The TnTs filled six boxes with toiletries for Covenant House Georgia, a shelter for homeless youth between ages 18-21. We collected socks, deodorant, toothpaste, toothbrushes, wipes, lotion, etc. When we dropped those items off, the shelter's staff members were surprised and grateful for the amount of items that we were able to collect in just six days. I am extremely proud to be a part of the TnT Network, they have a passion for giving and are simply AWESOME!
Posted: January 22, 2018
Midwest Regional Leadership Summit
Our 2018 Midwest Mochas leaders kicked off the year in St. Louis, MO with a fun Moms' Night Out and a day of learning at the first Regional Leadership Summit of the year.
Leaders from the MO - St. Louis, Kansas City, OH - Columbus, MI - Detroit, Grand Rapids, IL - Chicago Chapters, as well as National Board Members LaShaun Martin and Danae Aicher were hosted by Saleemah Jackson, our new Midwest Regional Director.
National Board Members will travel to each of our 5 Regional Leadership Summits this year and look forward to training all of our 2018 leaders to ensure a successful Mocha year.
Posted: January 8, 2018
Travel Bloggers Summit
Have you studied abroad? We are excited to be part of the Travel Bloggers Summit this week in NYC (formerly White House Travel Bloggers Summit on Study Abroad and Global Citizenship). The summit shares initiatives and new strategies for American students to study, volunteer, and work abroad, including scholarships and exchange programs. #studyabroadbecause
WHY STUDY ABROAD?
Did you know that one in three current world leaders have been on an exchange program in the United States?
Studying abroad is a critical component to deepening and broadening relationships with citizens overseas. Today, fewer than 10% of U.S. students take part in study abroad.
Today’s global economy demands students have more than just a degree when they graduate from college, but also the cultural and language skills to be effective.
MORE RESOURCES TO COME!
Posted: October 27, 2017